A while ago I built a couple inexpensive hacks that added voice-command to my tv and then to my lights using a Raspberry Pi, Google Home Mini, infrared and RF radio. Since then, I added other things, which prompted me to move the hacks into the popular Home Assistant home hub software.
With so much of my routine depending on that setup, backup became a concern. I’d make an occasional copy of the SD card with
dd, but that isn’t a good long-term solution. Ideally, I wanted to rebuild my setup easily, should the card get corrupt, slow or just wrecked by my ongoing hacking.
Enter Ansible. Sysadmins use it to write “playbooks” that represent the changes they would manually apply to a server. If done right, such playbooks can be applied to an existing server (fixing any broken configs), or a brand new one (to recreate its services).
The Raspberry Pi is just a (tiny) server - meaning hobbyists can use Ansible as well!
I’m not an Ansible expert (there are better places to learn about it), but my Ansible configs and these notes may be useful for anyone interested in automating Raspberry Pi setups (for home automation or anything else).